Sonoma Water E-News | May 2019
Ribbon Cutting Marks Milestone in Dry Creek Habitat Enhancement Project
On April 22, 2019 the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Sonoma Water hosted a ribbon-cutting celebration and a Design Agreement signing ceremony at the site of the completed Reach 4 on Dry Creek as part of the Dry Creek Habitat Enhancement Project. The project is a partnership between Sonoma Water and the Army Corps to improve habitat in the creek for threatened and endangered salmon species. The event was attended by more than 100 guests, including Brigadier General Kimberly Colloton from the Army Corps, and Congressman Jared Huffman. The event was also hosted by the property owner, Ferrari-Carano Winery & Vineyards, who have been supporters and partners in the project. The event marked the completion of Reach 4 under the Army Corps CAP program, which brings the habitat enhancement total to more than three miles of the six miles required under the Biological Opinion. The Design Agreement signing allows the two agencies to continue to work together to complete the remaining three miles of the project. 
Photo Caption: Representatives from resource agencies, landowners, Army Corps of Engineers, and Sonoma Water marked the completion of Reach 4, and the halfway mark of the Dry Creek Project, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on April 22, 2019.
Free Garden Tour
Focuses on California Natives, Landscape Design and Urban Gardens
The annual Eco-Friendly Garden Tour (Tour) will take place on May 4 th! Now in its ninth year, the Tour is sponsored by the Sonoma-Marin Saving Water Partnership (Partnership) and focuses on low water-use, sustainable landscaping. Tour participants will learn water-saving strategies and garden tips from homeowners while visiting gorgeous gardens and mingling with fellow gardening enthusiasts. The 2019 tour has over 40 inspirational gardens throughout Sonoma and Marin counties. Many of the gardens are owned by landscape designers and architects, enhancing the experience for those interested in landscaping their own yards or getting ideas for future landscaping projects.

This year’s tour includes a variety of new gardens in Sonoma Valley, a few of which have recovered from the 2017 Wildfires that swept through the region. The resilience of native plants have been visible on these properties and are beginning to bloom with color and wildlife. The California Native Plant Society Milo Baker Chapter will be presenting California native gardens in Santa Rosa, Sebastopol, Kenwood and Sonoma. Each of the gardens will have California native plant experts on hand to provide information to visitors. Several of the gardens will include additional activities such as native plant talks, demonstrations, and a native plant sale at the Laguna Environmental Center .
Betty Young from the Milo Baker Chapter of the California Native Plant Society comments on the importance of California native plants in our landscapes:
“As we lose more and more natural habitat, planting native plants in our gardens can replenish some of the precious habitat that has been lost. This is particularly important for the Monarch butterfly. Counts were low last year and this year are only 10% of that. They are truly on the brink of extinction in central California. Planting milkweed in your garden, the plant they must have to lay eggs, is essential to bring back the Monarchs. Each native you plant, means you attract and support butterflies, birds and other pollinators with your garden.”
Also, the Petaluma based non-profit Daily Acts will also be presenting gardens in Windsor, Cotati and Petaluma as part of their Resilient Homes Tour. These gardens optimize precious resources to create bountiful landscapes that offer beauty, wildlife habitat, fire defense and fresh food. Homeowners have designed their landscapes as mini watersheds, collecting rainwater, repurposing graywater, and nurturing the soil to keep as much moisture on site as possible.

We look forward to seeing you on this year’s Eco-Friendly Garden Tour! The tour is free, but registration is required at:

Contact Information
Sonoma-Marin Saving Water Partnership / Sonoma Water 
Chad Singleton | Sonoma Water Programs Technician | (707) 547-1923
Spring 2019 Public Tours
Wastewater Treatment Plant and Recycled Water Production Tours
The Water Agency is pleased to host free public tours of the Russian River County Sanitation District and the Sonoma Valley County Sanitation District. Come learn about where your water goes after if flows down the drain, how wastewater is treated, and how water is recycled and reused as a new resource after treatment. 
Sonoma Valley Wastewater Treatment Plant Tour
Saturday, May 11 th , 2019 – 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
Russian River Wastewater Treatment Plant tour:
Saturday, May 18 th , 2019 – 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
Tour registration is required. To learn more and to register, please visit . Registration will be confirmed via email.
Children must be 12 years old to attend a tour, and must be accompanied by an adult.

Questions? Please contact Emma Sharpe at (707) 521-6200 or 
Laguna-Mark West Restoration Plan Vision Meeting
On May 17 th there is going to be a meeting of the Management Advisory Council (MAC) and other partners involved with the Laguna de Santa Rosa restoration. The meeting’s focus is to discuss the restoration Vision for the lower Laguna de Santa Rosa based upon concepts developed by the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC), the San Francisco Estuary Institute (SFEI), Sonoma Water, and the Laguna Foundation at a previous Vision meeting. The input from the MAC and TAC will be integrated into the Laguna-Mark West Master Restoration Plan, which will be complete by mid-2020.
High School Student Essay Contest
Sonoma Water,  Sonoma Land Trust , and local painter  Richard McDaniel  are working together to showcase the history, beauty, and significance of the Russian River Watershed through a collaborative book. The book will feature paintings and stories that promote the protection of our watershed. Authors include river advocates and historians throughout the county. High school students are invited to write a personal essay about a favorite memory or experience in the Russian River Watershed for consideration in the book!

The winning essay will be published in the book, and the writer will receive $500 and be recognized at the release event in April 2020.

Entry Deadline:
Students must upload their entry by midnight on Friday, May 10th, 2019.

Please contact Kory Hebner at 707-521-6204 or
Rainfall and Water Storage Update
Current water supply conditions (5/3/19)
Lake Mendocino
Target Storage Curve: 86,175 acre-feet
Current Storage: 91,879 acre-feet (106.62% of Target)
Lake Sonoma
Target Storage Curve: 245,000 acre-feet
Current Storage: 245,860 acre-feet (100.35% of Water Supply Pool)
Current rainfall conditions (10/1/18 - 5/2/19)
Average (1894-2018 water years): 35.12”
Current Water Year: 39.48” which is 112.4% of average
Santa Rosa:
Average (1950-2018 water years): 29.16"
Current Water Year: 43.58” which is 149.45% of average
Upcoming Events

  • May 7, 2019, 8:30 am
  • May 14, 2019, 8:30 am
  • May 20, 2019, 4:00 pm - Sonoma Valley GSA
  • May 21, 2019, 8:30 am
  • May 28, 2019, 8:30 am

NBWA Board Meetings
  • May 3, 2018, 9:30 am
Fact of the Month

Sonoma Water staff will be starting the process of raising the rubber dam this coming Monday, May 6th. Possibly related to the abnormal flooding event this year, the dam may be able to be raised without any gravel removal this year.
Employment Opportunities

We invite you to explore the career opportunities available with the Sonoma County Water Agency.
Public Comment Opportunities

Please click the button below to see opportunities to provide your input and comments.
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